Jeremiah 48

1 Of Moab. the LORD of Armies, the God of Israel, says: Woe to Nebo! for it is laid waste; Kiriathaim is disappointed, it is taken; Misgab is put to shame and broken down. 2 The praise of Moab is no more; in Heshbon they have devised evil against her: Come, and let us cut her off from being a nation. You also, Madmen, shall be brought to silence: the sword shall pursue you. 3 The sound of a cry from Horonaim, desolation and great destruction! 4 Moab is destroyed; her little ones have caused a cry to be heard. 5 For by the ascent of Luhith with continual weeping shall they go up; for at the descent of Horonaim they have heard the distress of the cry of destruction. 6 Flee, save your lives, and be like the heath in the wilderness. 7 For, because you have trusted in your works and in your treasures, you also shall be taken: and Chemosh shall go out into captivity, his priests and his princes together. 8 The destroyer shall come on every city, and no city shall escape; the valley also shall perish, and the plain shall be destroyed; as the LORD has spoken. 9 Give wings to Moab, that she may fly and get her away: and her cities shall become a desolation, without any to dwell therein. 10 Cursed is he who does the work of the LORD negligently; and cursed is he who keeps back his sword from blood. 11 Moab has been at ease from his youth, and he has settled on his lees, and has not been emptied from vessel to vessel, neither has he gone into captivity: therefore his taste remains in him, and his scent is not changed. 12 Therefore behold, the days come, says the LORD, that I will send to him those who pour off, and they shall pour him off; and they shall empty his vessels, and break their bottles in pieces. 13 Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh, as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel their confidence. 14 How do you say, We are mighty men, and valiant men for the war? 15 Moab is laid waste, and they are gone up into his cities, and his chosen young men are gone down to the slaughter, says the King, whose name is the LORD of Armies. 16 The calamity of Moab is near to come, and his affliction hurries fast. 17 All you who are around him, bemoan him, and all you who know his name; say, How is the strong staff broken, the beautiful rod! 18 You daughter who dwells in Dibon, come down from your glory, and sit in thirst; for the destroyer of Moab has come up against you, he has destroyed your strongholds. 19 Inhabitant of Aroer, stand by the way, and watch: ask him who flees, and her who escapes; say, What has been done? 20 Moab is disappointed; for it is broken down: wail and cry; tell it by the Arnon, that Moab is laid waste. 21 Judgement has come on the plain country, on Holon, and on Jahzah, and on Mephaath, 22 and on Dibon, and on Nebo, and on Beth Diblathaim, 23 and on Kiriathaim, and on Beth Gamul, and on Beth Meon, 24 and on Kerioth, and on Bozrah, and on all the cities of the land of Moab, far or near. 25 The horn of Moab is cut off, and his arm is broken, says the LORD. 26 Make him drunken; for he magnified himself against the LORD: and Moab shall wallow in his vomit, and he also shall be in derision. 27 For wasn’t Israel a derision to you? was he found amongst thieves? for as often as you speak of him, you shake your head. 28 You inhabitants of Moab, leave the cities, and dwell in the rock; and be like the dove that makes her nest over the mouth of the abyss. 29 We have heard of the pride of Moab. He is very proud; his loftiness, and his pride, and his arrogance, and the haughtiness of his heart. 30 I know his wrath, says the LORD, that it is nothing; his boasting has worked nothing. 31 Therefore will I wail for Moab; yes, I will cry out for all Moab: for the men of Kir Heres shall they mourn. 32 With more than the weeping of Jazer will I weep for you, vine of Sibmah: your branches passed over the sea, they reached even to the sea of Jazer: on your summer fruits and on your vintage the destroyer is fallen. 33 Gladness and joy is taken away from the fruitful field and from the land of Moab; and I have caused wine to cease from the wine presses: no one shall tread with shouting; the shouting shall be no shouting. 34 From the cry of Heshbon even to Elealeh, even to Jahaz have they uttered their voice, from Zoar even to Horonaim, to Eglath Shelishiyah: for the waters of Nimrim also shall become desolate. 35 Moreover I will cause to cease in Moab, says the LORD, him who offers in the high place, and him who burns incense to his gods. 36 Therefore my heart sounds for Moab like pipes, and my heart sounds like pipes for the men of Kir Heres: therefore the abundance that he has gotten is perished. 37 For every head is bald, and every beard clipped: on all the hands are cuttings, and on the waist sackcloth. 38 On all the housetops of Moab and in its streets there is lamentation every where; for I have broken Moab like a vessel in which no one delights, says the LORD. 39 How it is broken down! How they wail! How Moab has turned the back with shame! So shall Moab become a derision and a terror to all who are around him. 40 For the LORD says: Behold, he shall fly as an eagle, and shall spread out his wings against Moab. 41 Kerioth is taken, and the strongholds are seized, and the heart of the mighty men of Moab at that day shall be as the heart of a woman in her pangs. 42 Moab shall be destroyed from being a people, because he has magnified himself against the LORD. 43 Fear, and the pit, and the snare, are on you, inhabitant of Moab, says the LORD. 44 He who flees from the fear shall fall into the pit; and he who gets up out of the pit shall be taken in the snare: for I will bring on him, even on Moab, the year of their visitation, says the LORD. 45 Those who fled stand without strength under the shadow of Heshbon; for a fire is gone out of Heshbon, and a flame from the middle of Sihon, and has devoured the corner of Moab, and the crown of the head of the tumultuous ones. 46 Woe to you, O Moab! the people of Chemosh is undone; for your sons are taken away captive, and your daughters into captivity. 47 Yet will I bring back the captivity of Moab in the latter days, says the LORD. Thus far is the judgement of Moab.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1-13

The Chaldeans are to destroy the Moabites. We should be thankful that we are required to seek the salvation of men’s lives, and the salvation of their souls, not to shed their blood; but we shall be the more without excuse if we do this pleasant work deceitfully. The cities shall be laid in ruins, and the country shall be wasted. There will be great sorrow. There will be great hurry. If any could give wings to sinners, still they could not fly out of the reach of Divine indignation. There are many who persist in unrepented iniquity, yet long enjoy outward prosperity. They had been long corrupt and unreformed, secure and sensual in prosperity. They have no changes of their peace and prosperity, therefore their hearts and lives are unchanged, Ps. 55:19.

Verses 14-47

The destruction of Moab is further prophesied, to awaken them by national repentance and reformation to prevent the trouble, or by a personal repentance and reformation to prepare for it. In reading this long roll of threatenings, and mediating on the terror, it will be of more use to us to keep in view the power of God’s anger and the terror of his judgments, and to have our hearts possessed with a holy awe of God and of his wrath, than to search into all the figures and expressions here used. Yet it is not perpetual destruction. The chapter ends with a promise of their return out of captivity in the latter days. Even with Moabites God will not contend for ever, nor be always wroth. The Jews refer it to the days of the Messiah; then the captives of the Gentiles, under the yoke of sin and Satan, shall be brought back by Divine grace, which shall make them free indeed.

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